There were many reasons why so many were invested in keeping Britney Spears' conservatorship in place for so many years.
The most obvious motives were the fact that it enabled her father and others to exploit the singer financially and manipulate her psychologically, which is an idea set of circumstances for any abuser.
But another factor that contributed to the ongoing effort to keep Britney sedated and silent was fear.
Those who had held her down so long feared that once she was free, Spears would retaliate by speaking out against her oppressors.
And thankfully, she's been doing exactly that.
In lengthy social media posts, Brit has been praising those who stood by her during the most difficult times in her life and who continue to offer her support now.
But she also hasn't held back when sharing her thoughts on those who took advantage of her when she was at her most vulnerable.
On Monday, Spears posted a lengthy screenshot from her Notes app which began with her thanking those who have recently performed unsolicited acts of kindness for her.
"I need to thank Betsey Johnson's beautiful soul for sending me the most adorable clothes... JLo for sending me the sexiest heels... Donatella for the bright dresses and most amazing robe with my freaking name on it... it's my favorite," she began.
"I do love shopping. though... who doesn't?" she asked.
Now, this was more than just an innocent rhetorical question, as it led Britney to recall her infamous 2003 interview with Diane Sawyer, in which the TV journalist suggested that Spears might have a problem with compulsive shopping.
"Is it an addiction?" Sawyer asked.
"No, I don't think it's an addiction. It makes me happy. No, it's not an addiction!" Britney responded with obvious surprise.
"Do we dare forget the Diane Sawyer interview in my apartment almost 20 years ago???" the pop icon wrote this week.
"What was with the 'you're in the wrong' approach? Geeze... and making me cry??? Seriously though," Spears continued.
"She asked me if I had a shopping problem!!! When did I have a problem with shopping??? When I never left my apartment???"
She then revealed a shocking bombshell about the circumstances of the interview:
"Something I never shared when I had that big break up years ago was that I couldn't talk afterwards," Britney wrote, referring to her split from Justin Timberlake.
"I never spoke to anyone for a long time... I was in shock," she continued.
"Two days later they put Diane Sawyer in my living room... they forced me to talk!!! I was a baby... I was almost 22 and didn't understand."
Britney went on to assure fans that she's much less easily fooled at this point in her life.
"But I f--king know now!!!" Britney said.
"She said 'a woman or a girl'... I would like to say now 'ma'am I'm a catholic sl-t!!! You wanna join me at a mass and I can serve your husband my certificate on shopping for anonymous players???'" she asked.
"I should spend a thousand dollars if I want every day of my life. And she can kiss my white ass."
A lawyer for Jamie Spears issued a statement denying that Britney's father played any part in arranging the interview.
"Jamie never set up any interview with Diane Sawyer and was not present for any such interview. He had nothing to do with Britney's career at this point and was completely uninvolved in this interview," the attorney told E! News.
"Jamie loves Britney very much, wishes Britney nothing but the best and hopes that she continues to seek the help that she needs to stay safe and healthy."
Britney concluded by noting that she has mixed feelings about being so candid about such a painful incident, but at the end of the day, she felt that the truth needed to be shared.
"And no I'm now embarrassed to share this... well maybe a little," she wrote.
"But I'm more embarrassed for my family for condoning the fact that I wasn't allowed to have cash for so long when I worked my ass off for them," Britney continued.
"I'm embarrassed for the State of California for permitting my father to have me work as hard as he worked me all those years and never sending me a dime," the pop icon continued.
"I'm embarrassed for all of them and I'm sad for them because I know my value and worth now... and they LOST ME!!!"
Britney has deleted her post about the Sawyer incident, but we doubt that she regrets making that information public.
And she's probably thrilled by the knowledge that she's currently striking fear in the hearts of those who did her wrong!